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Denmark approves gay weddings in church

ASSOCIATED PRESS

COPENHAGEN, Denmark -- Denmark's Parliament has approved a law allowing same-sex couples to get married in formal church weddings instead of the short blessing ceremonies that the state's Lutheran Church currently offers.

Lawmakers voted 85-24 on Thursday to change Denmark's marriage laws.

The law takes effect June 15 and will put Denmark on par with countries such as Iceland and Sweden that allow full wedding ceremonies for gay and lesbian couples.

In 1989, Denmark became the first country to allow the registration of gay partnerships. Since 1997 gay couples in Denmark can be wed in special blessing ceremonies at the end of regular church service.

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